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Lakehead U opens new engineering and sciences building

Research and innovation hub provides business incubation space

Lakehead University in Thunder Bay held the grand opening of its new $26.2-million Centre for Advanced Studies in Engineering and Sciences (CASES), Nov. 30.

The 42,000-square-foot LEED Gold certified building will be the home of four Canada Research Chairs, three research support units, seven research programs, the Faculty of Graduate Studies, and abundant lab and office space.

The building will also house:

• the Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Mining and Exploration

• the Aboriginal Mentorship Program

• the Biomass Utilization Laboratory

• the Prototype Development Facility

• the Nano-Materials and Advanced Technologies Innovation Centre

• the Laboratory for Integrated Freshwater Science

• the Community Ecology Energetics Laboratory

• the Human Origins Laboratory

• the Office of Sustainability

• a business incubator space called Ingenuity

The business incubator space will allow students and community members to work on creating their own start-ups in northwestern Ontario, perhaps opening the next Apple, Netflix, Nike or Amazon.

The facility includes a new transmission electron microscope and an x-ray photoelectron spectroscope – two important tools that will aid in research and innovation while also attracting new faculty and students to the university.

The project received $7.96 million from the Government of Canada, $1.54 million from the Province of Ontario, $5 million from the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation, $1 million from FedNor, $1 million from the City of Thunder Bay, $6.56 million in capital funding from Lakehead University, and $855,783 in equipment funding also from Lakehead.

“The equipment and laboratories in CASES will allow faculty and students to perform research that will solve important problems and develop technologies and processes that will have a direct impact on regional economic development,” said Lakehead president Moira McPherson in a statement.